This movie from the end of June 2012 (without commentary) shows an orphanage in the city of Haeju in the Southwestern part of North Korea. The children are listless and lack food and care. Several of the children show signs of severe malnutrition like distended stomachs, which indicate a severe lack of protein, thin limbs, apathetic expressions and hair loss. Most children were malnourished, some of them severely malnourished. Managing Director and doctor, Kim Hartzner, explains that as a rule of thumb the malnourished children in North Korean look only half as old as their age, e.g. a 4-year old will look like a 2-year old.
The section about working in the fields shows how dry the land is. During the time Mission East was there no rain had fallen for approximately 2½ months, which meant severe damage of the crops. Local agricultural techniques are primarily based on manual work and the country is suffering from a chronic food shortage, made worse by recent weather shocks.
The children who sing together are from a different children’s institution in Haeju.
North KoreaMission EastKim Hartznerorphanagechildrenfoodcaremalnutritionagriculturecrops
From Films from North Korea